England & Wales

Seminar: Speed Reading and Retention: Fast Reading Techniques & Memory Strategies for busy councillors



This is a highly interactive session that has been developed for councillors, who want to develop their skills in speed reading, and the ability to use memory techniques. It is a very practical programme which will demonstrate how to use different reading styles in order to maximise the limited time that is available for review and retention of material.

During the workshop we will be using a variety of different exercises and examples to show ways in which readers can double their reading speed, without losing retention. As part of this we will be exploring the way that the brain absorbs and retains information as well as looking at some interesting and pragmatic solutions to managing brain/eye control.

Importantly, we will also be talking about strategies for understanding ‘dense’ documents – technical reports/legislation – which are typically harder to read.  We will be identifying ways to analyse written information which are more about retention than speed. This means that the programme features ideas around reading more effectively – not just reading information faster. Delegates usually report an immediate speed increase of around 50 per cent in their ability to scan a document for its main points.

Programme highlights:

  • Improving eye-brain relationships
  • Minimising visual-gap speed
  • Different reading styles and approaches
  • Eye guides
  • How to gut a document to isolate key points
  • Using memory techniques to aid retention
  • How to study a document with a surveying technique

Full hand-outs and attendance certificates are provided.



9.45     Registration & Refreshments

10.15   Introductions, welcome and programme overview

10.25   How our brain works

10.45   Memory skills

11.45   Refreshment break

12.00   Introduction to mind mapping

12.30   Lunch

13.15   Principles of speed reading

13.45   Assessment of current reading speed

14.00   Different reading styles

14.30   Refreshment break

14.45   Eye guides

15.00   Reading for retention

15.30   Programme summary and close.




The course is facilitated by Miranda Smythe from The Baikie-Wood Consultancy Ltd, who has 30 years’ experience in writing and delivering personal development programmes. Miranda uses many of the techniques herself and is an exceptionally fast reader. She has also used some of the study ideas when undertaking her own learning and research and is committed to sharing these incredibly useful and practical techniques with others.
Who should attend?
 This is a highly interactive session that has been developed for all councillors.